Elon Musk keeps releasing new information he has uncovered about the political operations that were baked into Twitter corporate practices.
Musk wrote, “Twitter is both a social media company and a crime scene.” He has uncovered serious evidence of actual election interference, and his revelations show that former CEO Jack Dorsey actually lied to Congress numerous times when asked whether Twitter censored conservatives.
Now, the Twitter Files show that the leftists running the platform were using high-tech tools like bots to monitor, reduce reach, or completely black out the visibility of conservative voices, including high-profile names like Charlie Kirk of Turning Point USA, Jack Posobiec of Human Events, Dan Bongino of Bongino Report, Breitbart News, and actor James Woods, to name a few.
Twitter kept secret lists of topics and accounts to prevent conservative topics and people from trending, according to data released to journalist Bari Weiss. Conservative commentators like Bongino were blacklisted or, in the case of Kirk, put on “do not amplify” lists.
Journalist Matt Taibbi was the first to release the damning files that show how Twitter was essentially a political organization, rather than a social media platform: “The bot ends up becoming an automated tool invisibly watching both Trump and, apparently, Breitbart.”
Part III of the Twitter Files, released Friday through journalist Matt Taibbi, shows how the company operatives, in coordination with federal agents, decided to ban former President Donald J. Trump’s account on Jan. 8, 2021.
Part I and III of Twitter Files with Matt Taibbi at this link.
Part II of Twitter Files with Bari Weiss at this link.
Part IV of Twitter Files released by Michael Shellenburger, M.D., at this link.
In July, a news site reported that Twitter had hired an alarming number of former federal agents and spies. The news never made it to the mainstream media.
“Studying a number of employment and recruitment websites, MintPress has ascertained that the social media giant has, in recent years, recruited dozens of individuals from the national security state to work in the fields of security, trust, safety and content,” Alan MacLeod reported this summer.
MacLeod wrote that in 2019, Dawn Burton was recruited from her job as senior innovation advisor to the director at the FBI to become senior director of strategy and operations for legal, public policy, trust and safety at Twitter. In 2020 Karen Walsh left the FBI after 21 years to become director of corporate resilience at the silicon valley giant. Twitter’s deputy general counsel and vice president of legal, Jim Baker, spent four years at the FBI, where he was a senior strategic advisor before joining Twitter.
The FBI itself and Twitter top censors held weekly meetings leading up to the 2020 presidential election to anticipate “hack-and-leak operations” that pertained to Hunter Biden and foreign state actors. This gave Twitter all the reason it needed to bury the New York Post’s bombshell story on Hunter Biden’s laptop.
Some of the revelations that have been uncovered by Musk include:
- Yoel Roth, Twitter’s former head of safety Yoel Roth was meeting with the FBI on a weekly basis around the 2020 election.
- In 2017, Yoel Roth tweeted that there were “ACTUAL NAZIS IN THE WHITE HOUSE.”
- A Stanford doctor who argued that Covid lockdowns would harm children was secretly placed by Twitter on a “Trends Blacklist,” which prevented his tweets from trending.
- Talk show host, Dan Bongino (@dbongino), was slapped with a “Search Blacklist.”
- Twitter set the account of conservative activist Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) to “Do Not Amplify.”
- Twitter denied that it does such things. In 2018, Twitter’s Vijaya Gadde (then Head of Legal Policy and Trust) and Kayvon Beykpour (Head of Product) said: “We do not shadow ban.” They added: “And we certainly don’t shadow ban based on political viewpoints or ideology.”
- “VF” refers to Twitter’s control over user visibility. It used VF to block searches of individual users; to limit the scope of a particular tweet’s discoverability; to block select users’ posts from ever appearing on the “trending” page; and from inclusion in hashtag searches.
- “We control visibility quite a bit. And we control the amplification of your content quite a bit. And normal people do not know how much we do,” one Twitter engineer told us. Two additional Twitter employees confirmed to Weiss.
- The group that decided whether to limit the reach of certain users was the Strategic Response Team – Global Escalation Team, or SRT-GET. It often handled up to 200 “cases” a day, Weiss reported.
- But there existed a level beyond official ticketing, beyond the rank-and-file moderators following the company’s policy on paper. That is the “Site Integrity Policy, Policy Escalation Support,” known as “SIP-PES.”
- This secret group included Head of Legal, Policy, and Trust (Vijaya Gadde), the Global Head of Trust & Safety (Yoel Roth), subsequent CEOs Jack Dorsey and Parag Agrawal, and others. This is where the biggest, most politically sensitive decisions got made. “Think high follower account, controversial,” another Twitter employee told us. For these “there would be no ticket or anything.”
- One of the accounts that rose to this level of scrutiny was @libsoftiktok—an account that was on the “Trends Blacklist” and was designated as “Do Not Take Action on User Without Consulting With SIP-PES.”
- The account—which Chaya Raichik began in November 2020 and now boasts over 1.4 million followers—was subjected to six suspensions in 2022 alone. Each time, Raichik was blocked from posting for as long as a week.
- Twitter said it justified her suspensions because her posts encouraged online harassment of “hospitals and medical providers” by insinuating “that gender-affirming healthcare is equivalent to child abuse or grooming.” In other words, if an account insinuated that gender transition surgery is child abuse or grooming, Twitter would take action to ban or suspend the account.
- “These latest Twitter files shatter past denials of “shadow banning” and other suppression techniques targeting disfavored viewpoints. That includes denials by former CEO Jack Dorsey under oath before Congress and public denials by top corporate executives. The legal ramifications will become clearer as more information emerges. Yet, a far more significant problem already is confirmed in these files: the existential threat of corporate censors to free speech,” wrote Jonathan Turkey at The Hill. “You don’t need a state ministry of information if the media voluntarily maintains official narratives and suppresses dissenting views. And what emerges from these files is the notion of an effective state media in America — an alliance of media, business and political figures who act, not out of government compulsion, but out of personal conviction.”
Since journalists are major users of Twitter and rely on Twitter to gather information for stories, it’s impossible to capture and condense how Twitter has been shaping the mainstream news narrative and thus the political outcomes in the country, due to its practices of banning conservative speech.